JUST WATCHEDHouse Republicans subpoena Comey and Lynch ReplayMore Videos …MUST WATCHHouse Republicans subpoena Comey and Lynch 02:04Washington (CNN)Attorneys for former FBI Director James Comey and the US House of Representatives will be fighting in court Friday afternoon over whether Comey must testify to Congress in a private hearing next week.While Comey technically seeks to pause…
Washington (CNN)Attorneys for former FBI Director James Comey and the US House of Representatives will be fighting in court Friday afternoon over whether Comey must testify to Congress in a private hearing next week.
While Comey technically seeks to pause or kill the subpoena, he is using the case to air his accusation that members of Congress in the Republican-led House and Senate selectively leak details for their own benefit when they call witnesses to testify in private. He claims this practice has deprived him of his rights as a witness.
Attorneys for the US House called Comey’s request “so extraordinary and frivolous that, as far as undersigned counsel is aware, no district court in the history of the Republic has ever granted such a request.”
Comey said he would like to testify publicly about the separate investigations into Hillary Clinton and Russian interference in the 2016 election — in front of live TV cameras as he has done before.
“The broader purpose of these tweets and leaks appears to be to mislead the public and to undermine public confidence in the FBI and the DOJ during a time when President Trump and members of his administration and campaign team are reported to be under investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller and other law enforcement authorities,” Comey wrote in his complaint. He says he is a “victim” of Congress’ “unauthorized and abusive tactics.”
Comey is not expected to attend Friday’s hearing in person.
He has asked the judge to issue an emergency order to pause the congressional proceedings and to quash the subpoena. In theory, Comey could lose his court challenge and still win what he’s seeking, if he manages to convince the judge to pause his subpoena until the House flips to Democratic control at year’s end.
The case initially was set to be heard by Judge Timothy Kelly, a Trump appointee, then was reassigned randomly to Judge Trevor McFadden, also a Trump appointee, after Kelly likely recused from the case.